Thursday, October 16, 2014

About Holidays I'd Rather Not Celebrate

It's been a tough month so far in terms of grief.

Earlier this month, I spent time with three babies who were all born within a month of what our due date would have been.

In early October, I did have a visit with the midwife that was the one to inform me, in January, that our baby would likely die if there were no miraculous intervention.
I was nervous about that visit, but it didn't go badly at all.
I did walk alone down a hospital hallway toward my car... whenever I walk alone down that particular hallway, I remember walking alone out of the hospital, tears openly streaming down my face, with news for Michael that our baby was dead.
And on that day, the hallway walk went okay.

And then all of these miscarriage or stillbirth posts started popping up in my facebook feed.
In case you weren't aware, it's National Infant Loss Awareness Month....
Yesterday was Infant Loss Awareness day.

This facebook bit?
It hit nerves I didn't even know I had.
I would have rather moved on and forgotten....not memorialized something painful.

Maybe the women that are posting the cute little "light a candle for my baby" memes are six or seven years out.  Maybe they grieve differently.
But each time I see a post about having an "angel baby" or a "rainbow baby" (which I will never refer to Jubilee as), I just want to hide.  I would rather not copy and paste things flippantly to garner awareness for the loss of a life.  I would rather not raise my hand or stand up and be counted among the women who have lost a child.  I don't want that kind of attention.  (The only reason I blog about it is because I promised honesty through this whole process....and the only people I really have a moment to talk to on a daily basis are almost 2 and 4-1/2.  This is my free therapy. )

In a week and a half, I have another visit with the head midwife, who was the person to inform me that our baby/babies* were dead and counseled me through the couple months of followup hormonal testing I had to do.  I've visited with her twice, and she's the one who seems to understand the most this complex and nuanced dance of grief and joy we're going through.

This grief thing is complicated.  There are days that it hits me all over again, as if it just happened.  There are days I don't think about it.  Maybe next year's October will be better.  (Maybe I'll stay off of Facebook?)

I guess I'm just posting to say that holidays are weird.  Some holidays are sad for Million, by virtue of his background of trauma.  Some holidays are sad for me, because of what I know of Million's past.  Some holidays are just weirdly complicated (a lot of bad things have happened on both Michael and my birthdays in the past eight or nine years).   And this new "holiday" is sad.  Sad because it's not a holiday we signed up for.

Going to hug my boys a little tighter today and give them each a piece of chocolate caramel that I made this morning.  I still have no speaking voice, but they will know that their mama loves them.  Then we'll move on with the day-to-day rhythms of life: cleaning house, potty training, and getting ready for daddy to come home.  And we will celebrate our time as a family.  Being together, just the four of us for now, is our own kind of holiday.

*not an issue I bring up here frequently, or ever, but we will never know if it was one baby or two babies that I miscarried.  I prefer to think in the singular, but in the context of this memory, I chose to be a little more honest about my wording.

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